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Microsoft: Halo Not An 'Annualized' Franchise

Matt Gardner
343 Industries, Bungie, Halo, Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary Edition, Microsoft, News

Microsoft: Halo Not An 'Annualized' Franchise

Microsoft have responded to queries relating do the relatively short period between releases for Halo games in recent years, saying that the close proximity of Halo Wars (2009), Halo 3: ODST (2009), Halo: Reach (2010) and the upcoming Halo: CE Anniversary Edition (2011) is coincidental rather than pertaining to a Call of Duty-style yearly plan.

In a recent interview with IGN, Microsoft Game Studios' VP Phil Spencer addressed these concerns with particular regard to the upcoming HD revamp of the original.

People shouldn't look at Anniversary as part of an annualized franchise. I love the fact we're doing the Anniversary edition because I loved Halo 1. We just looked at it and thought it needed to be refreshed. It wasn't part of us trying to get into an annualized rhythm with the franchise. It will be done in time for this holiday that is the 10th Anniversary for Halo. It felt like a good time to celebrate it.

There's an argument to be made to suggest that this is simply an example of corporate greed looking to cash in, but then that's really what franchises are for, let's face it. With HD revamps running rampant right now, the decade mark seems a fitting way to honour the game that kick started it all, even if some of the pre-order prices have appeared ludicrous! 'We had discussions about "will people look at this as us milking it",' says Spencer. 'But we figured with achievements, Xbox Live, and "up-res-ing" the game, it was a project out of passion not a project out of business.'

Spencer would not be drawn on confirming a remake of Halo 2 although if November sees Combat Evolved do well, I would have thought an HD trilogy boxset would make perfect sense. Especially if the games come loaded into a Battle Rifle like magazine clips. We can dream.

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